Odisha asks Centre to pay BRGF arrear

Bhubaneswar: Odisha government today asked the Centre to take immediate steps for payment of arrear amount towards Backward Region Grant Fund (BRGF) for overall development of tribal-dominated areas.
"The state received only Rs 1076.16 crore against its due of Rs 1302.68 crore towards BRGF," state Panchayati Raj Minister Kalpataru Das told reporters after meeting Union Panchayati Raj Minister V Kishore Chandra Deo here.
Das conveyed the state government's demand to Deo, who is on a four-day visit to Odisha.
BRGF scheme is being implemented in the state since 2006-07.
Stating the state was not adequately funded under BRGF,Das said, while Odisha was supposed to get Rs 340.3 crore for the year 2012-13, it got only 179.86 crore.
In 2011-12 instead of the state's share of Rs 339.96 crore, it got Rs 325.95 crore, he added.
Twenty of the state's 30 districts are covered under BRGF,but 7 of them – Bargarh, Dhenkanal, Kalahandi, Koraput, Nawrangpur, Rayagada and Sundergarh have not received any amount this year.
Seven other districts Deogarh, Ganjam, Gajapati,Kandhamal,Keonjhar, Malkangiri and Subarnapur are yet to receive second instalment even though they had submitted utilisation certificates, he claimed.
Odisha, he said, was not adequately provided with funds under Rajiv Gandhi Panchayat Sasatrikaran Abhijan (RGPSA) too.
This year it received only Rs 10 crore under the scheme and the Centre has committed Rs 120 crore in next fiscal.
"While small states are given more amount, the Centre announced only Rs 120 crore for Odisha under RGPSA," he said.
Odisha was entitled to get Rs 20 crore per year for capacity building of panchayats and should have been given Rs 115 crore on this account but received only Rs 47.26 crore, he added.